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I am interested in any experience out there with increasing ride comfort on a 987.1 with stock non-PASM suspension and 19" wheels. I've searched the forums, lots of posts out there, but most posts are either about 981's, handling (not ride comfort), track tires, or are old enough to not include some of the newer tire choices (line the Michelin PS4S). Let me get this out of the way: I know this is not a Lexus, and I don't expect or want a Lexus cushy ride. I'm just exploring what options are out there to get some improvement in comfort over rough pavement.

I just purchased a 987 with 19" lobster forks and older Mich PSS that have good tread left, but MAY be somewhat hardened by age (about 3 yrs old - seller's claim?). I love the ride (comfort) and the handling (performance) on good roads. However, on broken or rough pavement, it is a pretty rough ride. While car shopping, I also drove a 987 with stock non-PASM suspension with 18s and Conti's and the ride was significantly better as I recall (not a back-to-back comparison). I'd really like to get closer to that way it rode with 18s. I'll consider going to 18s if that is the only solution, but am not 100% sure I want to compromise the looks of the 19s. So has anyone else sought a bit better ride on 19's and succeeded? Is there a specific tire that is known to give more compliance than the Mich PSS? Do the Mich PSS's harden with age? What about Conti's on 19s? I've even thought about going to a 40 series tire, as the 981s ride on 235/40/19 and 265/40/19. That would give a .5" larger sidewall, but the gearing would be about 3.6% taller. Anyone tried that?

Really I'm just curious whether I'd have to go with 18s to gain ride comfort, or can I get some (most?) of the way there with tire choice (brand or size) on the 19s?
 

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I have 18" wheels on my 2007 CS. I also had a very harsh rise until I changed to new tires shortly after I bought the car. The old ones had tread left, but they were about five+ years old and the sidewalls were hard as rocks. New tires made a world of difference. I think 19" tires, with their shorter sidewalls, would be even more sensitive to age hardening.

You can check the age of your tires: the last four digits of the DOT code are the week and year of manufacture.
 

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I am interested in any experience out there with increasing ride comfort on a 987.1 with stock non-PASM suspension and 19" wheels. I've searched the forums, lots of posts out there, but most posts are either about 981's, handling (not ride comfort), track tires, or are old enough to not include some of the newer tire choices (line the Michelin PS4S). Let me get this out of the way: I know this is not a Lexus, and I don't expect or want a Lexus cushy ride. I'm just exploring what options are out there to get some improvement in comfort over rough pavement.

I just purchased a 987 with 19" lobster forks and older Mich PSS that have good tread left, but MAY be somewhat hardened by age (about 3 yrs old - seller's claim?). I love the ride (comfort) and the handling (performance) on good roads. However, on broken or rough pavement, it is a pretty rough ride. While car shopping, I also drove a 987 with stock non-PASM suspension with 18s and Conti's and the ride was significantly better as I recall (not a back-to-back comparison). I'd really like to get closer to that way it rode with 18s. I'll consider going to 18s if that is the only solution, but am not 100% sure I want to compromise the looks of the 19s. So has anyone else sought a bit better ride on 19's and succeeded? Is there a specific tire that is known to give more compliance than the Mich PSS? Do the Mich PSS's harden with age? What about Conti's on 19s? I've even thought about going to a 40 series tire, as the 981s ride on 235/40/19 and 265/40/19. That would give a .5" larger sidewall, but the gearing would be about 3.6% taller. Anyone tried that?

Really I'm just curious whether I'd have to go with 18s to gain ride comfort, or can I get some (most?) of the way there with tire choice (brand or size) on the 19s?
I have the same car as you. 987.1 with no PASM. With Lobster Claws.
Firstly, congrats! What a car!
2nd, I'm assuming yours is a daily? I only drive mine on weekends so I relish the sports stiffness it offers for weekend fun. I can understand why you'd be wanting more comfort but it's a choice of priorities I guess.

I've not swapped my tires yet so I'll be commenting based on tyres I've used on other cars, but keep in mind these were cars with a much greater sidewall. HOwever changing brands, and from old to new, made noticeable differences.

Bridgestone Potenza RE003's offer great grip, semi track pattern, and a nice smooth on road ride.


On a lower budget level, I've also used a China brand Sumitomo. I "think" they were the HTR Z III. Again, great performance with a silky smooth ride.


However let's address the elephant in the room. If you REALLY want more ride comfort day to day, a change of wheel size is the thing that will make night and day difference, by increasing the sidewall.

Not a change I'm willing to make personally.

edit: Just reread your post and yes if your existing tyres are old, going new tyres will vastly improve your ride comfort.
 

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Firestone Firehawk Indy 500s softened my ride on 19s. Turn in not as quick as MPSS and top speed rating down a notch. But for a DD tire at <$200 for a 285 you get 90% of the Michelin performance for 40% less IMO.


Sent from my VS995 using Tapatalk
 

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Firestone Firehawk Indy 500s softened my ride on 19s. Turn in not as quick as MPSS and top speed rating down a notch. But for a DD tire at <$200 for a 285 you get 90% of the Michelin performance for 40% less IMO.


Sent from my VS995 using Tapatalk
ah HA!

Looked at your image and thought "looks like an RE003 to me".

Sure enough....same tyre. It's a Firestone Indy 500 in USA, and a Bridgestone RE003 in Australia. :)
https://grassrootsmotorsports.com/forum/grm/new-firestone-firehawk-indy-500-wait-bridgestone-re003-is-that-you/110937/page1/
 

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I am interested in any experience out there with increasing ride comfort on a 987.1 with stock non-PASM suspension and 19" wheels. I've searched the forums, lots of posts out there, but most posts are either about 981's, handling (not ride comfort), track tires, or are old enough to not include some of the newer tire choices (line the Michelin PS4S). Let me get this out of the way: I know this is not a Lexus, and I don't expect or want a Lexus cushy ride. I'm just exploring what options are out there to get some improvement in comfort over rough pavement.

I just purchased a 987 with 19" lobster forks and older Mich PSS that have good tread left, but MAY be somewhat hardened by age (about 3 yrs old - seller's claim?). I love the ride (comfort) and the handling (performance) on good roads. However, on broken or rough pavement, it is a pretty rough ride. While car shopping, I also drove a 987 with stock non-PASM suspension with 18s and Conti's and the ride was significantly better as I recall (not a back-to-back comparison). I'd really like to get closer to that way it rode with 18s. I'll consider going to 18s if that is the only solution, but am not 100% sure I want to compromise the looks of the 19s. So has anyone else sought a bit better ride on 19's and succeeded? Is there a specific tire that is known to give more compliance than the Mich PSS? Do the Mich PSS's harden with age? What about Conti's on 19s? I've even thought about going to a 40 series tire, as the 981s ride on 235/40/19 and 265/40/19. That would give a .5" larger sidewall, but the gearing would be about 3.6% taller. Anyone tried that?

Really I'm just curious whether I'd have to go with 18s to gain ride comfort, or can I get some (most?) of the way there with tire choice (brand or size) on the 19s?
Tires age mostly by heat cycles or by sitting on the car unused. Sunlight really makes sidewalls age quicker. Michelin is the best for the Porsche followed by Continental in my opinion. A different way to go is to buy the less expensive Chinese copy tires and just plan on changing your tires once or twice per year depending on how far and fast you drive.
 

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The dealership put the original spec 19" Pirelli's on my '12 CPO CS when I bought it. I replaced them with the new Michelin PS4S a couple of months later. The Michelins provide a much more civil ride on the road and are also markedly superior in the rain. (Great on the track too for us novices.) My '12 CS does not have PASM either.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks guys for all the insight! I checked my tires' ages per Greg's suggestion and the fronts were produced the 35th week of 2015, and the backs the 20th week of 2016, so they are not as old as I thought they were. However, the PO did not daily drive it, and used it primarily for mild track/DE's, so I'm sure they have heat cycled a bit, and sat unused a bit too. Good feedback on the re003/Firestone Indy 500 and sounds like the Michelin MP4S is a good choice too. The Indy's would allow me to spend less on new tires for the 19s and try them out - that would make the switch to 18s less painful down the road if I ultimately decide to go that route. Hmm...

Additional info: The PO put Tarrett adjustable sway bars on the front and rear. I just checked the rear bar (I feel most of the roughness of the road thru the rear tires/wheels) and it is set on the middle adjustment hole, so I can dial that stiffness back a bit and/or swap back in the stock sway bars. Not sure how much difference that will make, but I can give it a shot and see.

If I end up swapping tires on the 19s, any thoughts or experience on upsizing to 40 series 19" tires vs the stock 35 series (upsizing to 235/40/19 & 265/40/19)? Is 3.6% taller gearing/speedo error an acceptable tradeoff for gaining an additional 1/2" of sidewall on the 19s? My car has a 3.6 conversion with bolt-ons, so I think I'd have sufficient torque to handle the taller gearing, and I don't think I'd have clearance issues with the taller tires. But there may be something I'm missing by considering this...
 

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My first Porsche was a CPO 2007 CS with 19" lobster claw tires. Here in southern CA it had the roughest ride I'd ever experienced, with exception of the Honda S2K I bought several years later. lol Anyway, after about 2 1/2 years I sold the car primarily because for the $50 large I spent the car was just not what I wanted for a DD. i.e. too dam rough! I now have a CPO 2014 CS with 20" tires and PASM. I run it in "comfort" setting tire pressure and it feels great! My experience tells me that there is no answer to your situation other than downsizing to 18" wheels. You can spend money on other tire brands, Mich is the best BTW, or you can try other sized tires with higher sidewalls. But I'll bet it will be for not! If I were you bite the bullet, find some aftermarket 18" wheels you like and put a set of the latest Michelins on it. Money well spent, frustration avoided. Good Luck!
 

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If I end up swapping tires on the 19s, any thoughts or experience on upsizing to 40 series 19" tires vs the stock 35 series (upsizing to 235/40/19 & 265/40/19)? Is 3.6% taller gearing/speedo error an acceptable tradeoff for gaining an additional 1/2" of sidewall on the 19s? My car has a 3.6 conversion with bolt-ons, so I think I'd have sufficient torque to handle the taller gearing, and I don't think I'd have clearance issues with the taller tires. But there may be something I'm missing by considering this...
If the tire's diameter is too different than stock you risk PSM issues. Not sure about 987's but you may want to explore this. I know that it has been discussed previously on P9.
 

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If the tire's diameter is too different than stock you risk PSM issues. Not sure about 987's but you may want to explore this. I know that it has been discussed previously on P9.
^^^

I wondered this too.

1) You'd want to be sure you dont create rubbing issues (been there, done that, on 2 other cars).
2) You want to research tolerances of the car's computer very carefully. In "theory" (and that's all it is) so long as front and back are increased in the same way, you'd be ok. My old 350Z had a known tolerance so you could increase the rear by a little, but go too much, and the cars ECU thinks you've lost traction because the front and rear wheel rotations dont match, and throws traction control on (cuts power).

I'd be very surprised if the Porsche ECU isn't even more picky.

I'll sub this thread as "wider" tyres will be a consideration when I need to change mine ;)
 

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As long as you increase the tire size at each end of the car by the same amount the speed sensors and ECU will be fine. Your speedo and odometer will be off, but you are already aware of that. A half inch taller tire will fit fine, and will actually fill the wheel well a little better, perhaps improving the look.

The real fix for a harsh ride is softer suspension. Tires and wheels, and their pneumatic buffer, are part of the suspension and the easiest part to change. Increasing the tire sidewall and the amount of air between the tread/road and the rim is your goal. 18" rims would be my recommendation, perhaps with a slightly taller than stock tire size.

I get that big rims are sexy to look at, but tires are filled with air for a reason. They are supposed to be the softest part of the suspension and absorb the majority of the road imperfections. How can they do their intended job if the sidewall is only 2 inches tall?

I wish I could fit 17" rims on my car, but I don't think they would clear the brake calipers. If they would I'd run 255/40 on the front and 285/40 on the back , and enjoy the lower center of gravity and improved gear ratio for autocrossing.

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Just a couple of comments. I have a 2010 987.2 BS with 18's not 19's and no PASM. I swapped Bridgestone REO50 rocks for the new Michelin P4S and a huge improvement in ride, as well as every other measure. The Bridgestones were no more than 3yrs old. Ride improvement is one of the biggest improvements in the Michelins per most testers. Separately, I added snow tires last year so I can enjoy the car in the winter when the roads are actually clean, just cold. I got a great deal on a set of Porsche OEM wheel/tire/TPMS/colored crests with less than 3k miles, from a 2015 981 Cayman. Same wheel sizes but taller tires. I took the gamble on tire size when I couldn't find anyone else's comments on fitment, and the 981 sizes do clear, but the front's just barely clear at the top inner edge at the strut tower. Clearance is probably the thickness of a couple of business cards at that one spot, and otherwise well clear all around. I'm not sure if there was wear on those fronts that allowed this bit of clearance or if summer tire actual diameter is different than snow tires. I would be very careful ordering a new set of 981 xspec tires for the 987 without very careful measurement or a test fit of fronts.
 

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lobster fan here....

for daily driver 987, MPSS harden around 3 years of age. they start becoming a little slippery...
PS4S is very slightly better comfort wise, but to really reduce the harshness, you need to increase sidewall height or reduce rim size.

I'm considering 40 series but haven't measured if clearances can take it - 19's look nice on our cars :)
 

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Tom,
From your recent post, I see you are fairly new to the Porsche club. cmoose on Pistionheads is a big believer in using 17 inch wheels on his 06 Cayman 3.4. You can read about his exploits on back country English roads as well as excursions to the alps with those 17 inch wheels. He did need to use 7 mm wheel spacers in front to fit the wheel over his S brakes. I believe he uses 40 side walls or even 45 in the winter. They have a very dry sense of humor about these Caymans, so be aware of this when reading their posts. This picture is from his thread 3.4 bore score, its a great read.
 

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Re: Tire choice for more ride comfort on 19&amp;quot; non-PASM?

The Bridgestone 003 and the Firestone Firehawk Indy 500 are the same tire. I've been running the Indy 500 on my daily driver Audi for over a year and absolutely love them. I don't know of a better value in tires right now. 90-95% as good as the Michelin PS4S at half the price. I'm running 255/35 on a 19x9 wheel, so very close overall specs to a Cayman tire size.

Traditionally, Continental's competitor model to Michelin's tire usually sacrifices a bit of performance for a little more comfort. The Continental ExtremeContact Sport continues that tradition compared to the Michelin PS4S. If you're looking for comfort and the PS4S is on your list, make sure to check out the competing Continental.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Re: Tire choice for more ride comfort on 19&amp;quot; non-PASM?

Great input here, thanks. I'm new to Planet9, but am very encouraged at the helpful community here - that is not very common on car forums. Update on my conundrum: I dropped a few psi on my current 19" PSS's and adjusted my rear tarret sway bar to a softer setting. I also did the "trunk clunk" fixes to eliminate/reduce any auditory rumblings in the rear that may have contributed to a perception of a rougher ride. These things alone have made a noticeable difference over rough pavement. And I know I'm still on hardened tires. I've done some research on tires (need to do some more) and while I may still consider going to MPS4s, I am leaning toward Continentals, or perhaps the Indy's. The Conti extreme performance sport looks like a good compromise, but it sounds like the extreme contact DWs offer an even softer sidewall with not much handling compromise. At this point, I'll take a measured approach, I already have the lobsters and really like them, so I'll swap tires to a softer 19" and drive on those for a while. Based on the improvements so far and the fact that roads here in AZ are generally pretty good, I think this may get me where I want to be. If not, I can migrate to 18's at a subsequent tire purchase. Apex, I'm actually surprised that the 17's on cmoose's car look as good as they do. Maybe he's lowered a bit and that helps the look? I tried to search for the thread you mentioned but am getting this error ever time I try to search anything on P9 today: "connection to 127.0.0.1:9312 failed (errno=111, msg=Connection refused)". Everything else is working well with my internet, so I assume this is an issue with P9 at the moment (?). Regardless, thanks again, all.
 

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Re: Tire choice for more ride comfort on 19&amp;quot; non-PASM?

Tom,
Pistonheads is a completely different web site based in England, which is where cmoose lives. Actually the best way to search for an topic or answer on P9 is to use your regular Google web search engine, then you will see the choices from P9, many times going back a few years. cmoose really has set his car up for the back country roads, even when he put in lowering springs.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Re: Tire choice for more ride comfort on 19&amp;quot; non-PASM?

Tom,
Pistonheads is a completely different web site based in England, which is where cmoose lives. Actually the best way to search for an topic or answer on P9 is to use your regular Google web search engine, then you will see the choices from P9, many times going back a few years. cmoose really has set his car up for the back country roads, even when he put in lowering springs.
Ah, yes, Pistonheads - not sure how I missed that in your prior thread. Found the thread - quite long, but great reading. Gotta love the UK vernacular. By the time I got through it I unintentionally started talking with an english accent and fitting phrases like "the dog's danglies" into too many conversations. My wife was not amused.

And good tip for using Google for P9 searchs - works like a charm...
 
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